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On Douglas Adams

I have been, to varying degrees, embarrassed/delighted/flattered to have heard and read comparisons between “Love & Light & Marzipan” and the work (especially earliest) of Douglas Adams. One reviewer – just a punter but no less important for that - said that I have “…a similar absurdist voice to that of Douglas Adams but with a distinctly Northern accent” and honestly, I got a bit of a quivery lip, I really did, and said to myself, as Kurt Vonnegut advised us all to do at such times, ‘Well, if this isn’t nice, I don’t know what is!’ Of course, Douglas was a genius and I’m not, he was very into his science whereas history is my thing but nevertheless, I was encouraged to write a few lines for a “Hitchhiker’s guide to the galaxy” group. ‘Thought you folks might like to see them…

“Douglas Adams was the middle of my sandwich, the centre of my back 3 of Sheckley, Adams & Vonnegut as I was growing up. What he has done for me more than any other writer is speak comfort and administer a consoling pat on the back - offering the assurance that yes, existence really is that absurd and that my confused, aghast response was absolutely fine. I have, for the most part, been able to keep my sense of humour and therefore perspective - how any of us do this is a…is a…um…inexplicable anomaly. There are many artists, musicians, performers who have fulfilled that same purpose for me - gently poked fun at the nasties in the bathroom with charm and articulation by letting me know I am not alone. When I think of my disconnected adolescent self, no writer did more to dissipate the yellow clouds of miserable than Douglas Adams. He sure was a hoopy frood.”


RE Aug 2023

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